Try going down to the county office and searching public records..
Not only do you want to know how much is owed but also what are the comps in the neighborhood you are looking at. If the comparisons in the same neighborhood are less than what is owed, then you have some negotiating tools.
As far as Don Teppers advice that is does not matter....Baloney!
What if that house was bought Many years ago and it has less owed on it than many of the comps. Would you pay the comp price of the surrounding homes or would you offer less knowing that the amount owed was less than the surrounding houses??
Which property are you inquiring about? I can look it up for you. Good luck and please feel free to contact me if I can further assist you with any real estate needs. Thank you.
If you're looking for a good deal --- work with a realtor who can find you properties that are actively offered for sale. If your focus is on foreclosures, your realtor can help you with that as well as research background information on the property. Once a bank forecloses, and when the property is listed, the bank can/.should deliver clear title to the property upon close of escrow.
But I'd take you in a totally different direction: Who cares? The amount owed has nothing to do with what you should offer. Suppose the person bought the house 3 years ago, 100% financing, for $500,000. So about $500,000 is owed on it. However, today the house may only be worth $300,000. So the amount owed doesn't matter.
What does matter is how much the house is worth today. Then you resolve to pay no more than that amount. Period.
The investors I know who bid on houses (and there aren't many, for some of the reasons Eric lists), don't care how much is owed on the house. They care about how much the house is worth. Then you factor in the items Eric lists: other liens, taxes, and so on. And you factor in needed repairs.
So, don't focus on what's owed on the house. Focus on the home's value, other liens, and repairs.
Hope that helps.
Have you seen the house?
Have you done a title search?
Do you know who is auctioning the property?
Do you know how many loans are on the property?
Do you know the condition of the property?
Are the property taxes current?
Are there any other liens on the property, such as federal tax liens, or contractor's liens?
Buying at auction is fraught with risk, so you shouldn't do it without knowing everything about it. You could end up buying the property from one lender who has foreclosed, but other liens and loans will not be released from the property. The people who are most successful at this, do it all the time and know the ins and outs-they have made all the mistakes. Most properties don't generally sell at auction; if it's on the courthouse steps, that is the first step before going to foreclosure, which will go on the open market.
But, to answer your first question, you should check out Dataquick.com and contact a title company to get a title search on the property. There will probably be a fee to do that.
Sadly you cant unless you talk to the seller .
Your best way to go about it is to call a title company such as a Title Company pay
a small fee or go to the county recorders office. Then call the bank and ask to talk to the
You could also go down to the County Recorder's office. They should have all the information you want, it'll just take a little more time and effort on your part.